WalletHub released their 2019's Best Cities for Vegans & Vegetarians report, just in time for World Vegetarian Day on October 1—and a few are pretty surprising.

Lauren Wicks
September 30, 2019

Vegan and vegetarian diets are on the rise, as more of us become educated on how our current food system is impacting the environment and how we should all be eating more plants for better health. But you don't have to go totally meatless to enjoy a delicious, plant-based meal, thanks to chefs across the country who are whipping up incredible dishes with cult-like followings from vegans, vegetarians and meat-eaters alike.

In light of World Vegetarian Day on October 1, WalletHub has released their annual report for 2019's Best Cities for Vegans & Vegetarians, and we were pretty surprised by some of the results. Who would have thought the South was home to some incredible vegan food and that Orlando has so much more to offer than Mickey Mouse?

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Check out WalletHub's Top 10—based on such metrics as the cost of groceries for vegetarians, the share of restaurants serving meatless options and salad shops per capita—to find your next vegetarian or vegan vacation paradise, and discover out how your city ranks via the infographic.

Related: 9 Vegetarian & Vegan Protein Substitutes

10. Tampa, Florida

This rapidly growing city on Florida's Gulf Coast is home to the second highest number of vegetable nurseries in the country—which means lots of amazing, veggie-heavy food for a good price. Be sure to check out Farmacy Vegan Kitchen + Bakery for the vegan brunch of your dreams and Bamboozle Cafe for some stellar vegan and vegetarian options if you love Vietnamese food.

9. San Diego, California

"America's Finest City" is also one of the finest cities for vegans and vegetarians. San Diego is home to plenty of its own vegan and vegetarian restaurants, like Donna Jean and Bigfoot Natural Cafe, but also houses popular L.A. chains like Cafe Gratitude. Even San Diego's world-famous Donut Bar has several delicious vegan options.

8. San Francisco, California

San Francisco is a standout city for vegans and vegetarians, as it ranks #1 for Diversity, Accessibility & Quality, and #2 for Vegetarian Lifestyle. It's probably important to note as well that out of the 100 best cities for vegans and vegetarians, San Fran is considered the least affordable. Luckily it has the highest number of farmers markets and CSA programs per capita!

The veggie-powered eateries worth the money? Try Greens, one of the most iconic vegetarian restaurants in the country for veggies with a view, VeganBurg for a burger and fries or Gracias Madre for some killer tacos.

Related: 5 Secrets for Cooking Vegetarian Food

7. New York, New York

While the West Coast dominates most of this list, you can't forget about New York when it comes to finding incredible vegan and vegetarian food. The Big Apple ranks #2 when it comes to Diversity, Accessibility & Quality. One of our staffers all-time favorite vegetarian restaurants is acbV in between Flatiron and Gramercy for the most creative vegetable dishes. If you're looking for something a little more casual, Superiority Burger in East Village is popular with omnivores and herbivores alike.

6. Atlanta, Georgia

The South might be the last place you'd expect to find a delicious vegan dish, but Atlanta is home to many incredible options. Meatless meals abound in this city, with several popular chains, like Flower Child and True Food Kitchen, along with some standout options you can only find in ATL. Try Cafe Sunflower or Herban Fix for some of the South's best vegetarian and vegan options. And you can't miss out on the vegan baked goods at Dulce Vegan Bakery and Cafe.

5. Austin, Texas

Of course the home of Whole Foods Market has to also house some pretty tasty vegan and vegetarian food! Austin is the most affordable city for vegans and vegetarians in the top 10 (#11 out of 100) and has all kinds of meatless options for whatever you're craving. From truly Instagrammable Vietnamese food run by Buddhist nuns at Bodhi Viet Veggie Cuisine to Austin-style tacos at Nissi Vegan Mexican Cuisine, your taste buds are practically begging you to put ATX on your bucket list.

Related: The 10 Healthiest Trader Joe's Salads, According to a Dietitian

4. Seattle, Washington

While Seattle may be known for their coffee, their vegan and vegetarian food is just as famous. Out of the top 100 cities, Seattle ranks #4 for Diversity, Accessibility & Quality and #9 for Vegetarian Lifestyle. No Bones Beach Club is a hotspot for all kinds of palates, thanks to their beachy drinks and flavorful vegan food, while Plum Bistro feels slightly more upscale (even though they still serve up all your favorite vegan and vegetarian comfort foods). General Tso's Cauliflower, anyone?

3. Orlando, Florida

You may have recently heard Disney World is debuting more than 400 new vegan options at their parks this month, but the whole city of Orlando is home to some incredible vegan food without the high price of admission. The city ranks 6th for Diversity, Accessibility & Quality. The Sanctum Cafe is a must for inventive grain bowls and lattes, while Market on South is home to the best vegan sandwiches in the game. Make sure to grab a vegan donut inside at Valhalla Bakery, too. Trust us on this one.

2. Los Angeles, California

L.A. has been a haven for vegans and vegetarians before plant-based eating was cool, and they have some killer options, whether you're looking to "eat clean" or indulge a little. Venice is home to tons of great spots, like The Butcher's Daughter and Matthew Kenney's Double Zero and Plant Food + Wine, while Monty's Good Burger near Dodger Stadium is a dream for former meat eaters missing all their fast food favorites.

Related: EatingWell's Best Vegetarian Recipes

1. Portland, Oregon

Portland is home to the most vegan and vegetarian options in the country—as well as microbreweries! It ranks 3rd in Diversity, Accessibility and Quality as well as 8th in Vegetarian Lifestyle. While meatless options abound in Stumptown, a few favorites are Homegrown Smoker for the best vegan barbecue north of the Mason-Dixon (or maybe at all), Virtuous Pie for insane vegan pizza and Vtopia Cheese Shop for house-made, aged vegan cheeses unlike anything you've seen at the supermarket. We're already dreaming up the perfect plant-based charcuterie board!

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